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Nigeria’s House send 10.8 trillion naira budget to Senate

ABUJA (The Southern African Times) – Nigeria’s House of Representatives on Wednesday passed a revised 10.8 trillion naira ($30 billion) budget based on oil prices at $28 per barrel.

The budget is 300 billion naira above the one submitted by President Muhammadu Buhari late last month, and increases the expected oil price by $3 per barrel. 

The Senate will consider the amended budget on Thursday. 

The government had planned to cut its record 2020 budget due to the coronavirus pandemic and an oil price plunge, but the version passed by the House is above the 10.59 trillion naira level approved by Buhari in December.

The budget also assumes oil production at 1.9 million barrels per day (bpd). Oil prices have recovered from a 20-year low of just under $16 per barrel hit in March, and were trading at $41.65 on Wednesday evening. 

But Nigeria has also agreed to limit its oil output to 1.412 million bpd as part of a deal with the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and other producers. That agreement was extended through the end of July. 

In a statement, Senate President Ahmad Lawan said the upper chamber would consider the revised 2020 budget on Thursday, after receiving details of some of the 500 billion naira COVID-19 intervention fund that is part of the budget. 

“Tomorrow, we can receive and consider the report to ensure that we don’t delay anything as important as that,” Lawan said in a statement.

Nigeria expects its oil-dependent economy, which recently recovered from a 2016 recession, to shrink by 3.4% this year. 

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